How To Sharpen Hunting Knife For Best Result In 2020

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There are no people who don’t love hunting. And it’s really a great passion! But for hunting, people use a lot of different knives from small to large. And when you have a super sharp knife that ensures, it will run smoothly and perform well in any situation. But for better performance, you should sharpen it properly and you have to know the right way how to sharpen hunting knife?

The sharpening hunting knife is not so much difficult, even you can do it at your home. Many people think if they use the best hunting knife so it will never dull. But no knives retain their sharpness for a lifetime and proper sharpening increase the knife-edge retention. You can use a good pocket knife sharpener to make your hunting knife wicked sharp. Because if you carry a compact sharpener, so you can sharpen your hunting knives and tools.

What Kinds Of Hunting Knives You Want To Sharpen?

Professional hunters use many different hunting knives, and they have different ways to sharpen. So, first of all, you have to see which knife you are using? Here are some modern hunting knives, so I hope now you will understand many knife definition.

Folding knife: 

Especially a folding knife for hunting, peeling fruits, or it can be a perfect pocket knife. The folding knife is not very strong but you can easily carry it in your backpack or tackle box. Because it’s very lightweight and portable. But not ideal for heavy-duty chopping or cutting. But for a simple outdoor chore, it’s an ideal choice!

If you love folding knife so you can read my 10 best folding hunting knife 2020 full reviews here. I hope that will make you happy.

Fixed blade knife:

Actually most professional hunters use a fixed blade hunting knife. Because it is long and very strong than folding knife and ideal for any hard use. Maybe a fixed blade has no folding feature but its blade comes from the handle bottom. And it’s handle’s triple-rivet gives more stability and make them ideal for any outdoor work from chopping wood to skinning deer.

Serrated knife:

Serrated is an extra feature that provides some knife manufactures especially with a hunting knife. In the middle of the knife has some teeth that called a serrated knife. It’s very helpful when you need to cut some fibrous materials.

Gut hook knife: 

This is a really very good feature and you will get this special feature only with a deer hunting knife. This knife front side is moved on upward and it helps for gutting. And Elk Ridge knife is very popular for this. If you really manage this knife so it will help you for a perfect skinning.

Need Some Equipments Before Hunting Knife Sharpening

When you go to sharpen your hunting knife before you should manage some sharpening equipment. It will make your job so easy and fast. These equipment are very common you will get at your home or sometimes you may purchase them from a knife shop. Here are these common but helpful elements for sharpening all hunting knives.

Soft cloth for cleaning: Before sharpening your hunting knife, you should clean the place/stone where you want to sharpen the knife. Using a soft wet cloth is the best way to clean. Not only that after a complete sharpening process you can clean the blade by it.

Water: It is a very popular method to sharpen hunting knives and people use water as a liquid. Because there is no cost involved and it ensures very easy sharpening. But before sharpening your knife you have to know water or other liquid are better. Because if you use a knife sharpening stone, so there is both methods are available to oil and water stone.

Oil/liquid: Extra liquid is not compulsory to use but if you have already usees some sharpeners that perform well-using oil or liquid so you may use it. Some sharpeners are only for sharpening using oil and other liquid but it could be a very expensive process. Because you have to buy extra oil.

Which Methods Are Available For Sharpening Hunting Knife?

how to sharpen a knife

Now time to explain which methods are really available that works good for sharpening hunting knife. But there is some personal preference involved. Because all kinds of sharpeners you can’t carry with you. You can use them at home and before hunting, you can sharpen them.

Actually there are a lot of hunting knife brands and making knives now and then. Some examples of a fixed knife used for skinning, but butcher knives or Machetes uses in many different ways. So different knives different work definitions and that’s why its sharpness runs based on the brands and materials. And depends on your blades size and your experience you should choose the right one.

Pocket hunting knife sharpener: 

This is not a very advanced sharpening method. But you can easily carry this sharpener in your pocket. But a small pocket knife sharpener can’t handle any big size knife. It’s a great choice especially for skinning and a pocket knife. And another good reason it is very affordable and easy to use. Any new user can apply it without much experience to sharpen the hunting knife.


Waterstones are very common methods for sharpening hunting knives. Because it’s affordable than any other sharpeners and with a little effort you can use it. Before sharpening your hunting knife you have to soak the stone for 10 to 15 minutes underwater. Then put it in a steady place so that it not moved and you can safely sharpen the knife.

After place, your stone put your knife on it and slowly slide front and back using 20 degrees angle. For better sharpening, 10-15 slides are enough for per side. And it could be a hard-working job for your wrist. But for your hands comfort you can change your position. Keep in mind if your knife has a very thin edge so you shouldn’t give much pressure on it. When you have a long and heavy knife whose edge is completely blunt then you can apply more pressure and more slide.

Oil stone:

Oil and water stones haven’t any big difference. Because both methods provide the same features. But oil stone is an alternative way to use lubricant instead of water but it would be a very expensive sharpening process. Because you need extra honing oil for better performance.

But for using lubricant it makes slippery friction and the reason no need to big pressure to slide the knife. But there is no big difference in the sharpening angle between water and oil stone. And Arkansas sharpening stone is very popular with professional hunters.

Sharpening rod:

Hunting knife sharpening rod is not actually for the straight-edge blade. It only works for the serrated blade and gut hook knife. Because it’s really difficult to sharpen which knife has these features. Gut hook and serrated both plays an important role in hunting.

But if you carefully choose a pocket sharpener so you’ll get this with that. No need to buy an extra sharpener. Because some pocket knife sharpeners have multifunctional features that include a small sharpening rod to sharpen gut hook and serrated knife and it’s very easy to use.

Diamond stone:

Diamond sharpening stones are different than other regular stones. Because it has a different size and grit and it is very dry. So, of course, you have to use water or oil. But diamond sharpening stone eats more metal when you sharpen. But it provides very effective results. Using 20 degrees sharpening angle you should use your hunting knife to sharpen on a diamond stone. It’s very expensive but it never breaks easily and provides last longer performance.

Ceramic stone:

 If you sometimes sharpen your kitchen knives so maybe you already familiar with it. Maybe it’s not very effective which knives are already gone to deep blunt. But it in a limited budget it’s a good choice if you want to sharpen your knife regularly.

Because it works pretty well which knife already has a good edge and you may apply for a better razor-sharp edge. For example, a skinning knife is an ideal choice to sharpen with it. Because they have a very small and thinner edge.

How You Can Choose The Best Grit To Sharpen Hunting Knife?

If you are interested only for whetstones/sharpening stone so before buying or sharpen you should choose the right grit that actually perfect for your hunting knives. Because there is a lot of different sharpening stones and grit size some of them are; Coarse Grit, Medium Grit, and Fine Grit. And all grit has a different range like 200 grit, 300 grit, 1000 grit 2000 grit, 3000 and up to 8000 grit.

The coarse 1000 to 2000 grit is one most popular stone sizes to sharpen all kinds of knives. But after 5000 grit is not affordable and it only for a professional guy who needs a wicked sharp edge. Because of higher grade, stone grits make the knife razor-sharp edge and it looks like glass. And no need to use oil or water for friction, it recommended only stone to sharpen hunting knife.


People use different ways to sharpen their hunting knife. But it’s really important to know which is the best way to sharpen hunting knife. Because most hunting knives are very expensive and the wrong sharpener and sharpening angle can damage the knife edge. I recommend you to sharpen your knife on whetstones. Because this is the most effective way to sharpen your hunting knife professionally. Now I hope you understand how to sharpen hunting knife?

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